Thoughts For Coffeetime

It’s coffee time and it’s the weekend. My thoughts today are rather all over the place today. I’m glad it’s the weekend and time to relax a bit. Hubs and the boy will be heading off to the British Car show tomorrow leaving me home alone for either projects or relaxation. I have yet to decide.

Work is going much better and I’m starting to actually feel useful around the offices I’m placed in. Hurrah! At last! Sometimes the task lists are daunting and I have no idea what to do with some of them, but for the most part, with some detective work, I can do something. As a float nurse, that’s what it’s all about. Getting through what we can and muddling through the rest of you can.

Homework, for the most part, is going well with the boy. In saying this, we still have today to get through since we didn’t do Friday’s homework yet. Bummer on my part. I wasn’t feeling it yesterday. I suppose mom needed a little break.

Have you ever noticed how God works in those little mysterious ways? Lately, I’ve been talking to an old friend who has made me feel connected to so many good things in life. I so enjoy our conversations each day. It is something that has brought great joy to my life.

So, what’s new in your world this week? How has your week been? Join me for coffee and let’s make a connection!

Time for Coffee

Oh how I’ve missed having coffee with you! Let’s get a quick bite to eat and catch up.I’ve made some homemade oatmeal chocolate chip butterscotch cookies or there’s strawberries and angel food cake of you would prefer that.most of all, I’ve been looking forward to your company.

The kids are back at school now and life is back to it’s normal school year routine. Hard to believe I sent my second one off to college but she’s working hard and having a blast. What did we do before cell phones? She texts me and snap chats me almost every day. She’s gone to a Cardninals baseball game, done some Zumba and salsa to boot! Don’t worry, she has always studied and is doing that too. 

Number 3 is transitioning to  sophomore year as well. He so far has all A’s so what’s not to love there. I have a feeling that this will be a big year for him. He’s been going through a lot of changes lately but knowing that he has the love and support of his family will be the strength he needs throughout his life. He’s challenged by teachers to be his best, including his art teacher. I think she won’t be disappointed knowing my baby’s mad art skills! But when that teacher seems to single you out and speak directly to you in front of the class? Well, you just go do your thing! Go shine!

The little man seems to be adjusting to 4th grade fairly well. Granted it’s just a week so far, but homework is getting done, bedtime is being met and chores are mostly getting done. Work in progress! I’ll be talking to his teacher on Monday to see about behavior and work to see what improvements can be made. Pray for him and for me! I’m trying to be the proactive parent this year and working less means more time helping him stay on task.

Lastly, I’m back at work. I wish I could say I’m loving it, but it is work after all. I’m slow but learning and getting there. I finally have great teachers. I’ll get there and I sure felt better coming home Thursday than I did on Tuesday! Next week is the same but longer days. I’ll get there. I’ll get to know the job and the people and I’ll be just fine. Then, and only then, will I be able to say I love my job.

So, how was your week? I’m dying to hear about it! I hope it was wonderful just like you!

Ah Back to Work and Normality

This morning as I ventured out the door to make the trek to work, I felt as though I was never going to get this new job figured out. So many things to learn and relearn and I’m not getting any younger. It’s not that I’m beyond learning new things, it’s just that I seem to need such repetition to get the things I learn into my thick skull! Yes, that’s right, my thick skull. 

You see, I have done my former job for so long that I could do It in my sleep, except for the driving, but I knew how to do it so well. Now, I’m faced with new challenges everyday that take most people surely less time to conquer than it takes me! That’s what I’ve told myself anyway.

Overall, I like my new job. I enjoy the challenges immensely, but my brain hurts. I like computers but good grief there are at least 2 ways to do everything at my new job and sometimes I get so confused when one person shows me one way, then someone else comes along and insists I do the same thing a different way simply because it’s easier for them. Lord, please help me! I will get through it though. I know there will be an end to my training and I will be out on my own soon enough! God save us all!

At home, the youngest 2 kiddos are adjusting to life back in school. We have new rules in place and they are both in bed at 9. Yes, my 15 year old included. Homework is the priority but chores, too, must be done. It is a work in progress but hopefully will manifest itself by a successful school year. There will always be exceptions along the way. I know that. This isn’t my first bicycle race. 

I’m excited about the changes we’ve made and the best part to report is that Mr. 9 year old only had his homework fit once so far. He’s decided that it has to be done and the sooner it’s done the better! He also wants his teacher to be happy! I will continue to use this tool as much as I can. 

Working less is a blessing for me. I may have much less money but I will have happier kids. I think happier and more successful kids are the best goals I can achieve in my lifetime. 

There Are Days…

Have you ever had a day that you just didn’t want to come? I have and today was one of them. I’ve been off work for two and a half months.  It’s not that I don’t enjoy my job, it’s that I don’t know it that well. You see. I just started it about 6 weeks before I had to have major surgery and now I have to relearn the things I only barely learned in the first place!

Getting back into the swing of things for these first few days is hard enough when you know a job, but add to that the stresses of sending the kids back to school, the extra driver now away at college, and relearning or just learning things for the first time and it is exhausting. The good part is, I made it through my first day! Hallelujah!

I know things will get easier, but brain fatigue is a real thing, people. My brain felt as though it has run a marathon and read a 1000 page textbook on calculus today. Believe me, that would be pure torture for this soul!

To add to the mayhem of the foggy brain, coming home in was greeted by my son, my lovely 9 year old who hadn’t touched his homework. The kicker was the sheer amount of homework this 4th grader had this evening and the tears and gnashing of teeth it took to just get him to touch the books! Yikes! We never had anything like this when I was in 4th grade! He had 2 Social Studies pages, Reading, Science and Math! That is a lot for someone that age. 

Them there are the things that still need to be thought of like dinner. Hubs was great and made it tonight. That was so nice and much appreciated. Next up? Getting the boy ready for bed and things ready for tomorrow. Never a dull moment in this house. Just another day in the life! 

A Kinder Sort of World

th.jpgAt work today, I was met first with a challenge.  I went to the department I was to be in for the day.  No problem there.  I was met by 2 of the department’s nurses, neither of whom was the one which I was scheduled to train with, but both were willing to help me.  What a great feeling, a feeling of being wanted.  I was delighted to be welcomed with such warmth by these two nurses and this didn’t stop there.

I went to lunch on my own.  I like to do this most days because I like to blog or read some of your great posts, but today, I had to charge my rapidly dying phone.  For some reason, my phone was losing it’s charge at an exponential rate of maybe, say, light speed.  I have no idea why this was happening, but it was.  I was waiting for one particular phone call and as my phone was already down to 23% when I left for lunch, I thought giving it my lunch hour just might help.  It did, a little bit.  So much for reading and blogging though.

When I got back from lunch, however, I got to meet the person I planned on meeting initially, this morning.  We shall call her Tessa.  She reminds me of a Tessa.  She is absolutely one of the most helpful human beings I have ever met.  At first, I observed her, like I always begin my training, but then, I asked if I could try something to be helpful.  She let me!  She actually let me work on some of the tasks and the morning nurse let me room patients all by my little lonesome.  I’m on cloud nine right now.  I actually feel less like a complete and utter burden and more like a slightly mostly insignificantly helpful human!  Yes, I did stuff, people!  Me, I did stuff, today!  I wasn’t completely worthless at work!

Even the physicians are awesome in this group.  They are kind and patient.  I apologized immediately for anything that I may get wrong today or in the future as well as for asking a billion questions, but I’m a float nurse.  I have to know how everyone works.  That’s the beauty of what I do.  I am a nomad in the clinic setting.  I take my bag of important information that I acquire with me from day to day, office to office.  I carry it everywhere.  I’m portable and so are my skills.

I will get this job to work well for me, just as I will find my niche in working this job.  So far, I absolutely love it.  I haven’t been this happy in a job for a very long time.  I still can’t believe that it took me so long to make this decision to move here from home health, but I thank God daily for leading me on this new journey.  With such kind people surrounding me, my world is a kinder sort of place.

Happy Nurse’s Week

To all my fellow nurses, Happy Nurse’s week.  For those of you who have been touched by a nurse, tell them how much you appreciate them.  Nurses are, by nature, very caring individuals.  The reason we go into nursing is because we care.  We want to take care of people.  I’ve heard many people over the years say many things about nurses both good and bad, but believe me, we all started our careers caring.  We still care and it’s not about our paycheck that keeps up going to work.

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The future of nursing.

 

To be a nurse, it has been shown that nursing school is one of the most grueling majors in higher education.  I can certainly vouch for that!  It may have been 20 years since I graduated, but let me tell you, it wasn’t easy.  I studied all the time.  I did the eat, sleep, breathe method of studying and anyone who knew me in those years could tell you that’s exactly what I did.  I had no social life because I had a goal.  I wanted to be the best nurse I could be.  I got very good grades and I should have with how hard I studied.  It’s a very rigorous program!  Let’s not forget that once you graduate, you get to pay your state money to take your state boards! Yes, the dreaded, stressful NCLEX examination from hell! I remember taking it and coming back to my mom’s and telling her I failed.  I just knew I did, but I didn’t fail.  I passed first try.  Thank God! The joy of passing was so overwhelming I can’t compare it to anything other than giving birth to your first child!

As I say, I’ve been an RN for 20 years.  I was a CNA before that so nursing has been what I’ve done for 29 years, since I graduated high school.  My first clinical was when I was 17.  Since then, I have seen so much.  I have done so much.  I have worked in nursing homes and loved and lost residents.  I have comforted families.  I have worked in the hospital in many different departments.  I have been part of codes (when you are called to perform CPR on someone in the hospital.  I’ve lost patients.  I’ve comforted patients and families through difficult times.  I’ve worked in home health.  I worked in home health some more.  Now, I’m working in a clinic setting for the first time.  I suppose you could say I’ve done it all.  I love being a nurse.  I still love caring for people. Sometimes though, being a nurse is the hardest job in the world.  It isn’t just about caring for patients or families.  It’s so much more than that.  It’s pleasing everyone.

I have been asked to wear many hats in my career as any nurse has.  We are always having to do more with less time and resources.  It’s just a sign of our times.  Not a particularly good thing if you ask any of us, but as healthcare changes, so must we. Sometimes we get burned out too.  It’s a good nurse that can recognize that she is burned out and needs to change.  The great thing about nursing though, is that you can always find something that is different and challenging to keep your mind and skills fresh.  If you want to slow down, you can switch hours or work per diem.  Nursing is evolving too.  In my new role as a clinic nurse, I am challenged because although my hours are varied (I choose the days I’m available because I work per diem), I work in a float pool and need to know which doctor I’m working for that day.  I have to know how they like things and how their nurse runs things.  I like a good challenge and eventually I hope to be good at this. The downside to this is that I have no permanent home in the clinic, but that is okay, too.

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Lori, LaVonne and Deirdre. Friends since nursing school.  Friends for life.

What has being a nurse taught me?  I am able to do just about anything I put my mind to.  If I believe in myself, I can do it.  I even can paint a picture.  It may not be the best picture, but hey, I put it on my wall.  And I did it myself. I have faced challenging patients and families along the way.  I have faced challenging doctors on this journey too.  One such doctor had me in tears many years ago.  I was fresh out of hospital orientation and still in report.  The medication had just come up from pharmacy and this doctor was known for being a pistol.  She had a reputation for giving the new nurses a hard time.  The IV med was sitting on the medication cart because the day shift nurse brought it in and left it there for me so that I could hang it when I got out of report.  The doctor came into our med/report room and ripped me up one side and down the other because I hadn’t administered this medication yet.  I wasn’t given the option to explain.  I was so upset and then the tears came.  It was awful.  Many years later, I had learned that all that was needed with this particular doctor was to stand my ground and stand up to her.  I had done that on one particular day and she had never given me another bit of mouthy guff again.  She could actually be a nice person, sometimes.

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The end of a long day!

I can tell you that with all that nurses go through in their average day, the best part is actual patient care.  I personally love caring for people.  I have enjoyed all these years of meeting the many who have been entrusted in my care.  I have to say it has been a true blessing to be a part of their lives when things are just not going well.  I always make it a goal of mine to make people smile.  If I’ve made you smile, I’ve done a good job.  Happy Nurse’s Day and Week to all my nursing friends.  Reach out and hug a nurse and tell them you love them.

P.S. Most nurses like hugs.

 

Anxiety Be Gone

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A great quote which also works for anxiety!

Ah, I can smell the roses today.  Well, figuratively anyway.  My roses are not in bloom yet, as it is mid spring in my part of the world.  I’ve have a wonderful day today at my first day of my new job.  I was very anxious this morning as I set off to work.  You know the heart racing, nearly in tears kind of anxiety.  I am here to say, I’ve made it through and it turned out to be a good day.  In fact, I’m glad I’m there.  I will miss many things about my old job for sure, but I believe I made the right choice.  At least today, I think I did.

I will miss many things about my old job.  I will miss my friends dearly.  Over the last 10 years, I’ve made some wonderful friends.  I will miss my patients and the actual job itself, but I will not miss the hours.  The hours I spent working at my old job were getting ridiculous, granted, the paychecks were great and I will miss those very much.  I had to make a choice though of what was most important, money or time with my family.  I chose family.

I know I need to work to support my family.  I know that in these hectic, expensive times, it’s very rare that a family can manage on just one income which is why I work.  If my husband made enough, I would stay home.  As it is, we will be making more sacrifices due to my pay cut, but my time with my family is worth that as is my mental health.  I am cutting down my hours as well as changing jobs, although I’m still a registered nurse.

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Loved this series as a child

I have been a home health nurse for many years.  I’ve cared for a great number of people in my time of all ages, but mostly I’ve cared for children.  Now, I’ll be working for a clinic in a float position in surgery, speciality and cardiology departments.  I’m looking forward to these new challenges and I know I can do it, but it’s scary to me.  It is something that brings out my anxiety.  The good thing is I know how to accept that I have anxiety and I know how to deal with it.  Several months ago, I had a very difficult time doing that, but now, I’m stronger and much better able to handle this wicked monster.  I will prevail and anxiety will not win.  I’m stronger than it is.